Spatial and spectral behaviors of solar flares observed in microwaves

Zongjun Ning, Wenda Cao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The spatial and spectral behaviors of two solar flares observed by the Nobeyama Radioheliograph (NoRH) on 24 August 2002 and 22 August 2005 are explored. They were observed with a single loop-top source and double footpoint sources at the beginning, then with looplike structures for the rest of the event. NoRH has high spatial and temporal resolution at the two frequencies of 17 and 34 GHz where a nonthermal radio source is often optically thin. Such capabilities give us an opportunity to study the spatial and spectral behaviors of different microwave sources. The 24 August 2002 flare displayed a soft-hard-soft (SHS) spectral pattern in the rising-peak-decay phases at 34 GHz, which was also observed for the spectral behavior of both loop-top and footpoint sources. In ontrast, the 22 August 2005 flare showed a soft-hard-harder (SHH) spectral pattern for its both loop-top and footpoint sources. It is interesting that this event showed a harder spectrum in the early rising phase. We found a positive correlation between the spectral index and microwave flux in both the loop-top source and the footpoint sources in both events. The conclusions drawn from the flux index could apply to the electron index as well, because of their simple linear relationship under the assumption of nonthermal gyrosynchrotron mechanism. Such a property of spatial and spectral behaviors of microwave sources gives an observational constraint on the electron acceleration mechanism and electron propagation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-350
Number of pages16
JournalSolar Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Flares
  • Radio radiation


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